Tuesday, August 28, 2007
What Is This Thing Called Failure?
Once it was a lathered mutt
I saw in the window of a train,
defending his equipment hut,
choking on his rusty chain.
I was glad to be going places,
certain I could make it rain.
Then I saw it in the faces
of the stained old birds in parks--
you know the ones I mean--the cases,
wanderers who found the mark,
turned away in disbelief.
I saw, but the auspices were dark.
I saw it drop its scrim on grief,
add the cruel plasm of despair
to the spent tenure of handkerchiefs.
I saw it hover in the air
over schoolyards, eyeing its clutch.
I saw it damned near everywhere.
But lately? Lately not so much.
I’m pushing Pullmans late and soon,
going places, deals and such:
Cedar Falls tomorrow noon.
And nothing’s in my window but
a monkey grinning at the moon.